Southeast Alaska saw below average temperatures over Christmas weekend and even colder temperatures are expected in the first week of 2022.
The cold has set in across most of Alaska and set daily record lows in places like Homer, King Salmon and Bethel.
National Weather Service forecaster Benjamin Linstid says it’s not uncommon to see two La Nina winters in a row — forecasters call it a “double-dip.”
A proverbial “fire hose” of moisture hit parts of Southcentral Alaska over the past several days, causing flooding in places like Girdwood and a landslide that closed the Sterling Highway.
Alaskans shouldn’t read too much into the early season cold temperatures and snowfall.
One climatologist forecasts sea ice will form late, the extent will be below average, and it will be similar to last year’s.
Climate researcher Brian Brettschneider with the National Weather Service has predictions for winter, as well as the implications for Arctic sea ice.
Equatorial Pacific Ocean finally shows signs of cooling, but the Gulf of Alaska and Bering Sea are still extremely warm. Latest research indicates both phenomenon helped with each other’s formation between 2013 and 2015.
Biologists and marine researchers are investigating whether warm ocean water is contributing to whale and seabird mortality, marine mammal strandings, sea star wasting disease, paralytic shellfish poisoning and demoic acid.